Book Reviews The Rosary


Book Reviews
The Rosary of Our Lady and Goodbye, Good Men

Just finished two books, one a magnificent meditation on the Rosary, the other an occasionally illuminating, largely tedious exposition of the "way things are."

Romano Guardini's The Rosary of Our Lady is a two-fold book. The first portion provides an excellent defense of and argument for the praying of the Rosary. Some time back a bit of fuss was stirred over some who said that they found the Rosary difficult. I stand by it, but that does not mean that it should not be prayed. In fact, the harder and less pleasing it may be to me, the more valuable it may be to God. Guardini examines the nature and the purpose of the Rosary, comparing it to other forms of prayer, and not glossing over the perceived difficulties.

The second half of the book serves as a deep meditation on the mysteries of the Rosary, laying bare some wonderful revelations hidden within the lives of Jesus and Mary. If you already pray the Rosary, these will help to build up your reflections. If you have not started, these help you to understand some of the kinds of reflection/meditation that should be occurring as you pray.

Michael Rose's book, while timely and probably necessary as an exposition of present troubles, seems to be somewhat over-the-top. After about three chapters, I had gotten the gist of the argument. The layering of anecdotal accounts really didn't add substance to the argument and occasionally served to make the narrative sound whiny. Some of the complaints lodged began to seem trivial, which was unfair to the people who had experienced these trials.

I believe that the shorter discussions available on the Ignatius Press site and elsewhere managed to make the same point in less space, probably with greater impact. This meditation on the crisis is useful only if you really want to wallow in the detail and justify your already justifiable outrage. I can't recommend it very enthusiastically. But then, I don't often read things of this sort as they tend to depress me and make me think the world is a hopeless place. And, as we all know, THAT thought is simply a lie.

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on August 17, 2002 10:14 AM.

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